Posts Tagged ‘S.T.A.L.K.E.R.’

Nemesis Bundle 3 live on Bundle Stars, featuring S.T.A.L.K.E.R., Tropico, and others from 89p / $1

Nemesis 3

Not to let itself be out-done by Humble’s very many bundles packed with games, Bundle Stars has put together the ‘Nemesis Bundle 3‘. Unsurprisingly, this is the third iteration of the ‘Nemesis’ bundle, which collects a whole batch of games with a penchant for a little bit of the old ultra-violence. Similarly to Humble, this one is structured in a ‘pay more, get more’ format, starting from 89p / $1.

To get the whole lot you’ll have to throw down £8.89 / $9.99. That’s fifteen games total, including entries from the Tropico, S.T.A.L.K.E.R., Shadowrun franchises and more. You can also get the extra bizarre FaceRig tech in the mid-tier of the bundle if you like pretending you’re a raccoon on camera among other things.

Read the rest of this entry »

Scavenging A War-Torn City In Escape From Tarkov Video

Do you like guns? Do you like guns that realistically jam on you because you scavenged them in a war-torn Eastern European city and you had no other choice because people were trying to kill you and you had to defend yourself? Well that’s kind of what Escape From Tarkov [official site] is all about.

Last week, some of developers from Russian studio Battlestate Games hopped onto YouTube for their first ever livestream to dig into the atmosphere and complex systems of Escape From Tarkov. The parallels to S.T.A.L.K.E.R. and its sequels are pretty obvious, but Escape From Tarkov is aiming to translate all that hardcore shootyness into a hybrid-MMORPG.

Read the rest of this entry »

Own S.T.A.L.K.E.R.? Get It Free And DRM-Free From GOG

The one certainty with news items about S.T.A.L.K.E.R. [official site] is there’s at least a 70 percent chance they’ve been planted by Jim. Thanks Jim!

GOG.com continues to blow the horn in support of DRM-free everything with a new game reclaiming service, which you can check it out for yourself in this generously placed link. The idea is that if you bought a game legitimately but the game no longer works because of unsupported DRM or other causes, then you can enter your original game key in order to get a free copy of the game through GOG’s DRM-free online store.

Read the rest of this entry »

Don’t Just Stand There, Etc: The STALKER Bundle

Discounts on the STALKER trilogy (which seems like the wrong way to categorise the series somehow, but never mind) tend to wheel around pretty often, but this is particularly good deal for the whole set. There a certain games which are buried deep in RPS’ DNA, and the semi-open world, post apocalyptic survival/horror/action STALKER is one of them. If you haven’t played them, you are everything that’s wrong with humanity missing out some of the most ambitious and atmospheric shooters of all time.
Read the rest of this entry »

Happy S.T.A.L.K.I.N.G.: Survarium Freeplay Mode Plans

Don't be fooled: the beast is merely sleeping.

Gosh-o! After several years of nodding politely and say “Yes that’s nice but…” to news about the deathmatch-y side of Survarium [official site], developers Vostok Games are starting to share firm plans for the post-apocalyptic FPS’s open-world Freeplay mode. As we’ve hoped from the studio founded by former S.T.A.L.K.E.R. developers, it’s sounding pretty S.T.A.L.K.Y. as players roam across wasteland, scavenging for weapons and supplies, completing missions, sheltering from deadly storms, and being as helpful or murderous to others as they please. It has permadeath, obviously.

Read the rest of this entry »

I Said Come In! Survarium Open Beta Expands

It's some industrial-looking stuff okay? Cool okay.

GSC Game World announcing a comeback was a nice treat for the end of 2014, but even if they were working on another S.T.A.L.K.E.R. (they haven’t said they are, and I suspect they’re not) it’d be ages before we got to play it. Perhaps the closest we’ll get any time soon is Survarium, a free-to-play FPS made by a studio formed by folks who banded together following GSC’s collapse.

Vostok Games today launched Survarium’s PvP side into open beta for the rest of Europe with an English client. This brings it one step closer to release, which brings developers Vostok Games one step closer to adding the PvE mode that sounds far more S.T.A.L.K.E.R.-y and interesting.

Read the rest of this entry »

Get Into Here: S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Studio GSC Reopened

Back on the road.

Y’know GSC Game World? Oh, you do! The Ukrainian studio behind spookyhard FPS series S.T.A.L.K.E.R.? Oh, you must! You remember – they seemed to close in 2011 but held on a bit longer, still working on S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 for a few months then cancelling it, and since only resurfaced to weigh in on confusing brand rights issues. See, I knew you knew them. Well, they’re back, baby! Boom! And other exciting onomatopoeia. They’ve announced a return to active game-making, and chatted a little about what went down, including about S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2’s fate.

Read the rest of this entry »

Um: Areal Devs Are At It Again, With STALKER Apocalypse

See this here? This is a bargepole. It is, I would say, approximately ten feet long. What I’m doing with this bargepole is very deliberately not touching something with it. Even if said bargepole were a hundred feet long, I would still be very deliberately not touching something with it. That something is a crowdfunding attempt for a game called ‘STALKER Apocalypse.’ The people making it previously tried to make a game called Areal.

Yeah, the Areal that got abruptly pulled down from Kickstarter because it made all kinds of dodgy promises about being a spiritual S.T.A.L.K.E.R. sequel. “Stalker is just a word”, apparently. Uh.
Read the rest of this entry »

MISERY Diary: Playing Stalker’s Hardest Mod

Get to the chopper!

There are lots of survival games, but there are also lots of games which could be survival games with the right mods installed. Over the course of Survival Week we’ll highlight a few of those games and i) write a diary of our experience playing with it ii) explain how to do it yourself.

Honour is for better folk than I. Honour is for the short-lived. Honour is for the people not playing MISERY. Accordingly, I choose to play as a Sniper. I’ll pick off monsters from the safety of a nice, cosy bush, although odds-on that’ll eat me too.

MISERY is a mod for STALKER: Call of Pripyat, two all-caps games which combine to form an experience which shouts death and despair at anyone who tries to play it.

Read the rest of this entry »

How To Make STALKER: Call of Pripyat A Survival Game

There are lots of survival games, but there are also lots of games which could be survival games with the right mods installed. Over the course of Survival Week we’ll highlight a few of those games and i) write a diary of our experience playing with it ii) explain how to do it yourself.

Evil is nothing if not thorough. Usually I prefer to hone my experience with a series of small mods – other entries in this week-long series will do just that – but no combo comes close to the scope of the most twisted survival retool yet hatched: MISERY.

Read the rest of this entry »

Don’t just stand there, Come Watch …Familiar Areal Footage

I don’t want to get into any speculation of my own about what’s genuine and who has the right to do what in terms of STALKER’s heritage right now. Let’s just look at the brief in-game footage devs West-Games have finally pumped out to support their slow-moving Kickstarter, and see how we feel then.

Read the rest of this entry »

Survarium Beta Keys: Try The Stalker-ish Multiplayer Shooter

Update: And they’re all gone.

Back in March, Jim reckoned that the beta of Survarium was a strong start for the free-to-play multiplayer shooter. But what does he know? You want to try the game for yourself, to see how far its Stalker influences go and whether its a rusting wasteland worth dying within.

Now 1000 of you can, using the first-come, first-served beta keys below.

Read the rest of this entry »

Areal Kickstarting S.T.A.L.K.E.R. “Spiritual Successor”

When we first saw the announcement, I had no idea someone making a 'spiritual successor' to S.T.A.L.K.E.R. would cause such a mess.

If you took a S.T.A.L.K.E.R. design document and replaced the words “Chernobyl disaster” with “weird meteorite,” you wouldn’t be far off from Areal. Think post-apocalyptic open world survival FPS with non-linear missions, populated by simulated life and mutants, and fizzing with dangerous anomalies. That sounds pretty enticing in itself, but developers West Games also have a few former S.T.A.L.K.E.R. folks working on the game, including the series’ lead designer.

As you might guess, it’s on Kickstarter. However, West Games don’t have much to show of Areal at this point. Their pitch relies heavily upon S.T.A.L.K.E.R. footage and pre-existing artwork not made for the game (some even made for S.T.A.L.K.E.R.). Given that they’re only looking for $50,000 (£30,000)–nowhere near enough to realise such ambitious ideas–it’s a mite concerning.

Read the rest of this entry »

All STALKER Games Saved From GameSpy Server Meltdown

GameSpy has officially exploded, and games are still fleeing from ground zero while green smoke and shrapnel billows every which way. It’s been a messy process, to say the least, with some games finding happy new homes while others collapsed on the street side, never to rise again. STALKER, thankfully, has made it out at the last second, with whatever remains of GSC releasing a patch for STALKER, STALKER: Clear Sky, and STALKER: Call of Pripyat to migrate online functionality onto their own servers.

Read the rest of this entry »

In the Zone: How Gamers Experience The Real Chernobyl

I am standing in the middle of Pripyat in what was intended to be the site of the 1986 May Day festivities. Now an expanse of cracked concrete, the iconic rusting ferris wheel stands behind me. No one else is in sight, as I’ve been left here alone to get on with some measurements. Looking down at the Geiger counter in my hand I slowly make my way back and forth across the area, taking readings at regular intervals. This is my last research trip to the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, the end of six months spent tagging along with tour groups and later helping as a tour guide.

I should be used to this space now, but I feel uneasy. Occasionally I anxiously look up and scan the thick line of trees and shrubs that border this area and break line of sight with the nearby ruined buildings. I try to rationalise my way out of this fear – I tell myself the worst thing that’s likely to happen is the embarrassment of trying to cobble together an explanation in Russian for what I’m doing if Pripyat’s police guard wanders by.

But there’s more to my unease than this. It’s not that I’m alone, it’s that I’ve been alone here before. Only the last time was whilst playing S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Shadow of Chernobyl.

Read the rest of this entry »

Impressions: Stalker: Lost Alpha

Stalker: Lost Alpha is out, but it’s not finished. Typical Stalker, really. The game, a fan-fronted effort to reconnect all the elements that were cut from Shadow of Chernobyl, was leaked during development. The developers have chosen to release it earlier than planned, and I decided to try it out. It’s still Stalker, still based on the first game, but at the same time it’s not. It’s as close to a remix as I’ve ever come across in gaming, bringing in new elements, but still reminding me of the original. It’s all different, but if you loved the first Stalker, instead of reinstalling the original and modding it, when this is fixed it’ll be your next install. I guarantee it.

Read the rest of this entry »

Green Hell Zone: S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Lost Alpha Out Now

Although Survarium shares some DNA with the magnificent, terrifying ecosystem of S.T.A.L.K.E.R., the Lost Alpha standalone mod is the closest thing to a new game in the series we’re probably going to see for a good while. What began as an attempt to restore content cut from the original release of Shadow of Chernobyl has become a total overhaul of the game, with sections redesigned and reintegrated, and changes to elements other than maps. It’s been in development for five years and is now available, slightly earlier than originally planned. There are download links (including an official torrent) over at Moddb and you won’t need to have the original game installed to play. I want to spend my day in the Zone.

Read the rest of this entry »

Survarium Entering Open Beta… For One Day

We can be stalkers, just for one day

Do you want post-apocalyptic Russian survival shooting to fill the irradiated void left behind by STALKER 2’s cancellation? Well, the handsomely molded ashes of GSC Game World, aka Vostok Games, have something in store for you, even if it doesn’t exactly play like STALKER just yet. Survarium is currently in closed beta, but it’s going fully, completely open for, er, 24 hours this Friday. After that it will burrow back into the sooty loam of game development until the end of (nuclear) winter. Or until the start of the real open beta. Whichever comes first.

Read the rest of this entry »

Found: S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Lost Alpha Mod Coming This Month

Who hasn't longed to see this little chap waddling around?

Like old Stalker tales told around the campfire, a lot of strange and wonderful things were once said to be in S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl, from naked green dwarves to driveable vehicles and a whole extra city. Several mods have restored various bits of cut content, based on leftover files and leaked dev builds, but Lost Alpha is one of the more ambitious. What began as a project to remake and reintegrate these leftovers has blown up into a new parallel story which includes (new) old content and a bits of the creators’ own design too.

In response to some ruffian leaking a scrappy old build from November, developers Dezowave Group have decided to release Lost Alpha earlier than planned then keep working on it. It’ll arrive on April 26, the 28th anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster which started all this.

Read the rest of this entry »

I Am Overencumbered: Why Game Inventories Matter

Rob Sherman, author of interactive fiction project Black Crown, asked if he could write about videogame inventories. We were powerless against the result, which pairs a personal journey through the English countryside with the a treatise on the power of possessions and the reasons videogames must do better in representing them.

There was once, and still is, a boy and a man called me, and one summer, two summers ago, I could be found tiptoeing along a main road in southern England, my boots full of dusty blood.

I had only taken them off once in the last day, and at that point I had nearly wilted from the sight and smell. I took my diagnosis on top of a chalk escarpment, a widow’s peak, a combover of woodland. The couple on the bench next to me were after-work drinking from cans, and looking at the wealds rolling away from them. They must have thought that some medieval leper had staggered out of the local hospitalers, holidaying on his stumps.

Read the rest of this entry »